Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Are we done? Yes. Yes we are.

We are finally done with training. It's hard to believe, but it's true. Today is actually our last day at the hub site, and tomorrow we travel about 5-7 hours south to the swearing-in venue. Why is it 5-7 hours? Because we have to pass through Manila, and its traffic is that bad. So we're just been doing wrap up activities here, filling out about 8000 evaluations and surveys, listening to people blabber at us about this and that. We had our community project last week, but we weren't able to participate because Abby decided to faint and hurt her neck, so we had to go to the hospital in Manila. According to my host father, it's the hospital movie stars go to. Thanks, Peace Corps. Anyway, after some tests it was determined that Abby just fainted, it wasn't a serious problem, or a seizure and her neck got better after a few days, so it wasn't too bad at all. Plus I found a little cafe around the corner that had turkey sandwiches on wheat bread with freakin' gruyere cheese on it. That is huge, believe me. So we did all the work for the project, had all of the meetings, bought all the stuff, and all we missed out on was the actual trash collection, which I don't mind at all. That trash was nasty.

We also had our LPI (Language Proficiency Interview), which is the official test to see where you are in the language. You're supposed to achieve a certain level or proficiency, otherwise you have to write up a language action plan for the next 6 months, etc. Basically they just hassle you. Anyway, I did really well, I got intermediate-high, which is the highest anyone got. There were 5 others who were in the bracket with me, so I felt pretty proud of myself. Abby did really well too, she got intermediate-mid, so neither of us will be hassled! Yay! It was funny though, people were getting really stressed about the test, which I couldn't understand. Nothing really happens to you if you don't meet the requirement, and all the test was was a 30 minute conversation with the tester in Tagalog about basic stuff like your job, your family... Anyway.

We also had our supervisor's conference, which was great because we all sat down with our supervisors and got on the same page about work schedules, what we'll actually be doing, what we expect of them and what they expect of us. My supervisor is a great guy, and I have so many potential projects to choose from it was more of a matter of figuring out what one project I'll start with initially. So, I will be working with a community (chosen by myself with my counterparts) on setting up and implementing a mangrove restoration project. I bet you didn't know I knew how to do that. Hell, I didn't even know I could do that, but I'm going to be doing it anyway. I've actually been doing a fair amount of research, so I think I'll be ready to get started once I get to site.

We also had to say goodbye to our host family on Saturday, which was very sad. They were great people and incredibly nice, but we have a friend who will be in this area, so we'll stop by and visit them again when we come to visit her. The news we got to soften the blow was that we'll be living with one of my counterparts, which is great news because she's only 29 and awesome. So to summarize, our co-workers are awesome, our jobs are awesome, where we're living is awesome and life is well, awesome.

1 comment:

Paula said...

Totally cool! xxoo